Last Thursday, the Atlas Performing Arts Center had a reception for those participating in this year's Intersections: A New America Arts Festival (Feb 23 to Mar 11).
In fact, I had already been at the Atlas just a couple of days prior with Dance/Metro DC's Awards Committee, to meet with Festival Artistic Director, Mary Hall Surface, and her team on-site, but more on that in a later blog.
At the reception, I was there as a SpeakeasyDC Board Member, and also just as a member of the amazingly diverse performing arts community, here in the DC area.
Even before I entered the Atlas, I run into Colin Hovde, who recently returned to Theatre Alliance on staff as Artistic Director. We were joined by Jenny Frederick, Artistic Director of Rorschach Theatre and Director of Performing Arts at Cultural Development Corporation, as we entered the lobby.
So we enter the lobby, and while I feel like I'm just name-dropping at this point...I think I've made peace with the fact that I kinda am. I'm thrilled to know the people I do in DC, and every time our paths cross, it just reaffirms that somehow I managed to end up where I need to be, doing what I love in life, here in the Washington metropolitan area.
Before the official reception program begins, I run into Jeffrey Blender, the board member who was responsible for recruiting me to SpeakeayDC's board before terming out, met me in the lobby, after which I proceeded to run into a number of other creatives.
One is Bobby T, a wonderful guy and singer, who I know through the Gay Men's Chorus of Washington. One of GMCW's small ensembles, Potomac Fever, will actually be performing in the festival along with local musician, Tom Goss.
I see Samia, an artist I know through my work at Class Acts Arts, as one of our MD Traditions in the Schools artists, and say hi. She's presenting her Spirit of Unity concert.Turning around at one point, I bump into Ouida, a classmate of mine from AU's Arts Management program and give her a hug. She's there on behalf of Dance Exchange's Teen Exchange program, which will be performing at the festival. A disclaimer: I recently became a member Society DX, Dance Exchange's twitter ambassador group.
Another dancer present was Angella, founder and Artistic Director of Alight Dance Theater. Our paths actually crossed the last presidential election year, participating in a David Dorfman piece where I did my undergrad, in UMD's Dance program.
And I should not have been surprised when I run into Paige Hernandez, performing a piece with B-fly Entertainment. Our paths crossed when she presented a selection from her show, Paige in Full, at Sulu DC's monthly event.
Can't forget running into Solomon, who was present on behalf of the Library of Congress and their concert series. "What?" you might be asking, "the Library of Congress has a concert series?!" Yes, yes it does. At least that seemed to be the majority of the reactions he received. One of DC's best kept secrets, I might argue. Our paths intersected in the last professional show I did before starting grad school in '08, Jerry Springer: the Opera with Studio Theatre 2nd Stage.
That's about it, as far as I can remember. And that's just the tip of the iceberg, when it comes to the variety and quality of performing artists that are presenting work at this year's Intersections Festival.
And if I saw you that evening, or mentioned you but didn't list your organization above or below, please let me know.
The amazing thing was looking at the festival calendar and seeing how many other artists I knew in some capacity. The humbling thing is realizing this has less to do with me and more to do with the wonderful community that we have in the DC area, one in which we strive to better ourselves and each other, with our art.
More than anything, this evening really reminded me how exciting this year is going to be, as well as how much each year continues to top the last, for me as an artist, as an audience member, and just as a person who is part of this huge, extended family.
You can check out the festival schedule here. Anything you're looking forward to, or are you participating? Feel free to leave and comment!!
And if you're attending the festival, particularly the Speakeasy DC shows or the Dance/MetroDC awards, I look forward to seeing you there,
- J Street Jr
On social media? So is pretty much every organization I mentioned, those participating in the festival directly and others who were present by association.
- Intersections - Facebook | Twitter
- Atlas Performing Arts Center - Facebook | Twitter
- Alight Dance Theater - Facebook | Twitter
- B-fly Entertainment - Facebook
- Class Acts Arts - Facebook | Twitter
- Cultural Development Corporation - Twitter
- Dance Exchange - Facebook | Twitter
- GMCW - Facebook | Twitter
- MD Traditions - Facebook
- Rorschach Theatre - Facebook | Twitter
- SpeakeasyDC - Facebook | Twitter
- Studio Theatre 2nd Stage - Facebook | Twitter
- Sulu DC - Facebook | Twitter
- Theatre Alliance - Facebook | Twitter